TOMSK, Sep 12 –
RIA Tomsk. A children's Jewish center opened on Sunday on
Rosa Luxemburg Street in Tomsk; about 100 people gathered in front of the Tomsk
synagogue for the opening, RIA Tomsk correspondent reports from the scene.
Earlier it was
reported that the Tomsk Jewish community has completed the construction of an
educational centre at the synagogue. The center will have day care groups for
children, language courses, and a library. It will be open for all Tomsk
citizens. According to the regional administration, the new children's Jewish
center is the largest in the country.
According to RIA
Tomsk correspondent, the children's Jewish center was opened on Sunday,
September 12, at 38/1 Rosa Luxemburg Street. The opening ceremony was attended
by Deputy Governor Sergei Ilyinykh, Acting Tomsk Mayor Mikhail Ratner, Chief
Rabbi of Russia Berel Lazar, and representatives of the Tomsk clergy. According
to the correspondent, about 100 people came to the opening ceremony.
capacity of the center is very large: 50 children will be able to engage in
pre-school education, 200 children - in additional education. Twenty
specialists will work at the center. All conditions have been created for both
bringing up and educating children to the proper level," Ratner said at
the opening of the center.
In turn, the
deputy governor for domestic policy Ilyinykh presented commendations to the
head of the Tomsk Jewish community Yuri Zelvensky and Tomsk Rabbi Levi
"We see so
many people here, so many young guys. We understand that this is not an easy
time, people think twice: should they go or not, they are afraid. But the fact
that so many people came is a sign that this center is really not only needed,
but has been awaited for a long time," Lazar said at the opening ceremony.
Earlier, it was
reported that the Tomsk Jewish community planned to build a House of Jewish
Youth and a Tolerance Center at the synagogue in 2016. Construction was
suspended in the summer of 2016, resumed only in the fall of 2017, and
completed in 2021. The construction was funded by benefactors.
© РИА Томск. Михаил Голубев
Chief Rabbi of Russia Berel Lazar at the opening of a new children's Jewish center in Tomsk sang a prayer and attached a mezuzah (containing part of the Shema prayer text) to the doorjamb of the building
© предоставил Леви Каминецкий
A stone synagogue was opened in Tomsk in 1902. The two-storey building in Eastern Moorish style could seat up to 500 people. In 1929 the building was alienated and at different times it housed warehouses, a cinema, a military school and a regional court. In 1999 it was given to the Jewish community.